Miranda and Caliban by Jacqueline Carey
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Thanks to Netgalley for this ARC!
There's a lot going for this tale as long as you're a certain type of reader. You must love Shakespeare's Tempest, but even if you don't, you might still get a kick out of this retelling from the points of view of Miranda and Caliban switching back and forth from early childhood through the events of the play.
I would definitely recommend this for general fans of YA fiction, for one, because most of the novel if not the action revolves around childhood friends and the stresses of growing up under one hell of an absolute tyrant who never lets his wards even guess that he controls every aspect of their lives. Oh, Prospero.
It's fine for what it is, but if you're aware of the play, you know that this budding tale of thwarted romance between the dark boy and the rightful Duke of Milan's daughter, you also know that it is a tragedy.
The play is only a romance if you identify with certain characters.
This novel invites us to love Caliban, and his is definitely not a happy tale.
We're grown-up readers, right? We can handle a bit of disappointment at the end of a book, right? This isn't an Alternate retelling of the play. This is a straight-up retelling of the play with many added dimensions and depth, but the results are still the same.
For me? I appreciate what the book was trying to accomplish and I got a lot of out it on that level, but by the time I was invested in the tale, I was just cringing because of what I knew was going to happen.
I'm hedging on this one. I can appreciate the writing and the premise as far as that goes, but my own enjoyment was curtailed by the rest.
However, since this was the first book by the author that I've read and I've heard a lot of good things about her other works, it behooves me to pick them up and see if it was just the subject matter that was painful and not the writing. :)
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